Final Workshop Innovation in Emerging Economies

13 – 14 July 2017

Technical University Berlin

Berlin, German

Background and Research Topics

Technological upgrading of emerging economies is a multidimensional process based on a broad understanding of innovation. It is a multi-level process and at its core is structural change in various dimensions: technological, industrial, organisational. It is also an outcome of global forces embodied in trade, global value chain (GVC) participation and investment flows as well as local strategies pursued by host country firms and governments. The changing nature of new technologies coupled with the proliferation of GVCs leads to new patterns of technology upgrading (or lack of it) about which we have limited in-depth knowledge. Innovation that takes place in emerging economies may be present through different forms of ‘hidden innovation’ like improvements in production capability, upgrading through engineering, new forms of software support or new business models. In short, there is need to understand better not only the scale but also scope of innovation activities in emerging economies. The aim of the workshop is to generate new and policy oriented empirical evidence and new conceptual understanding of technology upgrading and innovation in emerging economies. We intend to deepen the knowledge about BRICS economies as well as less researched emerging economies. We invite submissions addressing, but not limited to, the following topics:

-          Measurement and indicators
This research refers to new measurement approaches and indicators of technological upgrading and innovation in emerging economies. It includes studies based on official statistical data, patents measures, bibliometric information, or survey evidence.

-          Sector and technological dynamics
This research areas deals with the emergence and developmental prospects of new technologies and industrial sectors including, for example e-mobility, robotics, renewable energies, 3D printing.

-          New innovation patterns and business models
This line of research focuses on technological and innovation capability building in emerging economies. This includes firm level case studies on innovation patterns and business models specific to emerging economies such as frugal innovation.

-          Foreign direct investment (FDI), Multinational enterprises (MNEs) and innovation
Related studies focus on the interaction between FDI and innovation in emerging economies. This includes research on innovation by foreign MNEs in emerging economies, technological linkages between foreign firms and domestic firms as well as technology sourcing by emerging market MNEs.

-          Upgrading in global value chains (GVCs)
This research area investigates the interaction of GVC participation and the technological development in emerging economies. It links to research on the position of emerging economies in global innovation networks/systems as well new evidence on firm level and industrial upgrading.

-          Innovation policy
This research area addresses policy approaches and mixes of innovation, industrial and FDI policy to stimulate technological development in emerging economies.


Keynote Speakers

Maria Savona

Professor of Innovation and Evolutionary Economics, University of Sussex, SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit (United Kingdom)

Glenda Kruss

Deputy Executive Director for the Centre for Science, Technology and Innovation Indicators (CeSTII) in the Human Sciences Research Council (South Africa)

Mike Morris

Professor of Economics and Director of the Policy Research on International Services and Manufacturing (PRISM), University of Cape Town (South Africa)


Invited presenters

Tilman Altenburg (German Development Institute, DE)

Eduardo Amando (Fundação Instituto de Administração, BR)

Slavo Radosevic (University College London, UK)

Andreas Stamm (German Development Institute, DE)

Magdolna Sass (Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, HU)

Daniel Schiller (University of Greifswald, DE)

Priit Vahter (Warwick Business School, UK)

Chan Yuan Wong (University of Malaya, MY)

Local Organising Committee

Knut Blind (Technical University Berlin, DE)

Iciar Dominguez Lacasa (University of Bremen, DE)

Jutta Günther (University of Bremen, DE)

Björn Jindra (Copenhagen Business School, DK) 

Michael Nauruschat (Technical University Berlin, DE)

Dirk Meissner, (Higher School of Economics, RF)

Tong-Yaa Su (University of Bremen, DE)


Special Issues

Submissions presented at the conference are considered for publication in two special issues related to the conference theme scheduled for publication in 2018.

-          Technological Forecasting and Social Change has a special issue on “Exploring Technology Upgrading of Emerging and Transition Economies: From ‘Shifting Wealth I’ to ‘Shifting Wealth II’?

-          The International Journal of Technological Learning, Innovation and Development offers a special issue on “Technological Upgrading and Innovation in Emerging Economies



The workshop is financially supported by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) within the framework of projects funded for Innovation and Technology Analysis (ITA).